The average person knows shockingly little about the human body, considering that they've spent their entire life living inside one. It's not their fault, though; bullshit "facts" about health, diet, sex, and everything else continue to swirl around pop culture, and even make it into the classroom. So let's set the record straight on a few big ones ...
6 Myth: Sitting Too Close to the TV Will Damage your Eyes
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You probably remember one of the most exciting things about childhood: coming home from school, grabbing a snack, then sitting cross-legged on the floor a few inches from the TV as the cartoons came on. That is, until your parents would tell you to pick your ass up and move back, because sitting that close to the TV would ruin your vision.
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That's not even factoring in if you had Cinemax.
If there's any correlation between sitting so close to the TV as a child that it looked like you were about to make out with it and needing glasses as an adult, then it's probably the other way around -- that is to say, you were sitting that close because you had shitty eyesight to begin with, and that was the only way you could see the TV.
In fact, of all the studies that have been done to test whether there was a minimum distance below which the TV would start to fry your eyes into smoking craters, no evidence has ever come out to suggest that there even is one. The rumors probably surfaced back when old-timey televisions spewed radiation, and people were worried about damaged eyes and/or Hulk powers during Amos 'n' Andy.
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"Get back from the TV before you get eye cancer! And drink your Radithor!"
Staring at television or computer screens for long periods can make your eyes hurt and feel dry and strained, but this isn't because the screen is harming your eyes; it's because focusing hard on something means you blink less often, and your eyes get tired. Just take a break now and then, and you can press your nose right up against that porno without worrying about cataracts.
5 Myth: Healthy Teeth Should be Gleaming White
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Every toothpaste you pick up promises at least two things: fresh breath and white teeth. Because when someone smiles and puts a mouth full of piss-yellow teeth on display, all you're thinking is "put down the coffee and pick up a toothbrush, you medieval pit beast." Yellow teeth are a sign of terrible hygiene, and repel sex more effectively than a beard confined entirely to the lower neck.
It's the Ed Hardy t-shirt of facial hair.
You might think white teeth are attractive, but as far as being natural, they're the dental equivalent of fake breasts. That's right, the natural color of human teeth is yellow. Sure, staining them with coffee or cigarettes makes them darker, as does not brushing often enough, or doing meth. But the pinnacle of oral health doesn't make your mouth look like George Clooney's, either.
In fact, your desperate, futile attempts to scrub your teeth white can actually damage them. Stiff toothbrushes are abrasive and weaken teeth by stripping off the outer layers. On top of that, "whitening" toothpaste brands are mostly bullshit. If you cough up the dough to get your teeth professionally whitened, they'll bleach the enamel, which also damages them.
"Come on, her baby teeth going to fall out soon anyway. I've got boat payments."
So despite TV commercials insisting that healthy teeth should be as white and polished as a stormtrooper's crotch plate, the whole "gleaming white teeth" thing is one of those cultural beauty standards, like insisting dudes need to wax their chest hair.